BRYANT – Junior pitcher Blaine Knight struck out the first four batters he faced and nine straight to start, to lead the Bryant Hornets to a 11-1 five-inning victory over the Pine Bluff Zebras in 7A/6A South action on Friday at Hornets Field.
Knight picked up the win giving up one run on one hit, walking two and striking out eight for the game.
The Hornets would strike first early as junior Drew Tipton hit a one-out double to left field and came around to score when third-place batter Chase Tucker singled up the middle for the 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning.
Tucker stole second base before junior catcher Trey Breeding walked. An error by Pine Bluff pitcher Kenneth Gatewood on an attempted pickoff moved the runners to second and third base before junior Jason Hastings scored Tucker with an RBI ground out and 2-0 lead. With Breeding at third base, Gatewood would get called for a balk to score Breeding for the 3-0 lead.
The Hornets (6-2, 1-1 South) added a run in the bottom of the third before Pine Bluff scored a run to make it a 4-1 game after four and a half innings. But, Bryant would put a 3-spot up in the bottom of the inning and a 4-spot up in the fifth to invoke the sportsmanship rule to end the game with the 10-run lead after five innings.
The Hornets hit the road to Florida on Saturday to play in a tournament in Tampa, Fla. Bryant will begin play on Monday at 1 p.m. (EST) against a team from Calgary, Canada, and another on Monday at 4 p.m. against a squad from Rosemount, Minn. The Hornets will also play on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday in the Tampa Tournament.